The report by the United States-based market research and consulting firm, Hexa Research, has said it all: Global sesame seeds market size is expected to hit $17.77 billion by 2025.
It noted that the popularity of the seeds as an ingredient in many foods was key in the market. Increased application of the product as an anti-oxidant in various pharmaceutical formulations is expected to drive the market.
The world sesame seed production is estimated at 4. 8 million tonnes; with 10 countries – Myanmar, India, China, Tanzania, Sudan, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Uganda, and Niger – accounting for over 80 per cent of it.
Africa, it noted, accounts for over 45 per cent of the crop, and in the last 10 years has become as a fast-growing supplier of sesame seed in the world market.
Of the global production, over two million tons are exported yearly mainly to China (one million tonnes), Japan (150,000 tonnes), Turkey (150,000 tonnes), European Union (150,000 tonnes), South Korea (100,000 tonnes) and Vietnam (100,000 tonnes). US, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates (UAE) are also importers.
The global demand for the commodity is on the increase, and expected to grow at a 4.2 per cent compound yearly rate (CAGR) between 2018 and 2024. Nigeria’s exports to China, Turkey, Japan, Vietnam and South Korea.
The European Union (EU) has been on the look out for contaminated agro exports, including sesame seed coming into the region.
The concerns stem from the yellow warnings it has issued over severe chemical contamination of agroproduce from Africa and Asia.
Last month, the European Alert Food System said it recorded about 500 reports of unauthorised Ethylene Oxide (EtOx) substance in products with sesame seeds.
There are a host of other challenges, including the chronic hazards of pests and diseases, along with shortages of labour, inappropriate agricultural practices, inadequate transportation infrastructure and access to electricity and lack of access to finance.
At present, Nigeria is the seventh-largest exporter of sesame seeds in the world.
Read more: The Nation